Do your prospects and customers know what you do and who you do it for? I mean, REALLY know?
It might surprise you to learn just how little they do know. And that can be a real problem when you ask for a referral.
To refer someone to you, the referrer has to have a clear understanding of who she’s referring. Her reputation is involved. And if that understanding isn’t all that clear, – and probably more importantly, easy to convey – chances are you won’t get too many referrals.
The solution? Create a backgrounder sheet that clearly spells what you do, who you do it for and why it matters.
That way, you can remove all the guesswork and give someone a drop-dead simple way of putting you in front of opportunities they come across.
We’ve all been in those encounters where we get asked what we do.
Often, the situation calls for an “elevator pitch” or our 30-second commercial.
But sometimes, especially when you’re looking to create a source for referrals, the “snippet” approach won’t do the job.
I originally created my backgrounder sheet so that I could send it to people who asked to join my LinkedIn network. When that happens, I send them the information you’re about to read so they know who they are connecting with.
I also include a one-pager of client testimonials with it. If you would to see exactly what I send eg. what it looks like, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
OK, here’s what my backgrounder includes:
Who I Help: My ideal target client is a small business owner, independent professional or entrepreneur who already has experienced some success but they’re “stuck”. Why? Because the success they have so far largely depends on them being in the thick of the action.
The personal “know, like and trust” factor (KLT) they can transmit in a personal selling situation is often non-existent in their sales and marketing materials.
My Target Client Profile: Small Business Owner/Entrepreneur/Independent Professionals. Female or male. Between 35-55 of age. Already has a successful business. Very busy – often too busy working “in” their business instead of “on” it. Often feel frustrated and overwhelmed by marketing. Many know how to sell and market THEMSELVES but struggle to market their businesses with the same effectiveness.
What They Want: They want to grow their businesses – without having to put in more time. That’s the catch-22. They want to “feel” successful and have some freedom and not feel like a caged rat on an never-ending treadmill to exhaustion. They want options but marketing that lacks their personal charisma, energy and credibility continually pulls them back into the fray.
Many of my ideal clients are sales and marketing savvy in a face-to-face selling situation but they aren’t sure how to inject their personal enthusiasm and energy into their websites, emails, sales letters and other promotional material so that more of their ideal clients are attracted to them. Some just want to use their time more effectively and leave the messaging to a professional.
The Problem I Solve: I help them inject emotion into their marketing – their passion, their energy, experience, knowledge and credibility so prospects “feel” like they are dealing with a real person who understands their needs and wants and can help them.
My Area of Specialization: I help clients create an online (and offline) presence that oozes the critical “know, like and trust” feeling that prospects MUST feel before they will do business with someone. I use my copywriting and marketing skills and 25+ years of selling experience to make sure they have a unique, compelling message and a clearly identified ideal target market. If they don’t, that’s where we start.
I also show them, if necessary, how to elicit this “KLT” feeling when fielding incoming sales inquiries or sending out sales proposals.
Take a stab at putting together and using a backgrounder sheet of your own.
It will always be useful and who knows, it could just be that spark that ignites a steady stream of referral business.